LENTEN FASTING FOR ASH WEDNESDAY AND BEYOND
These laws are to be seriously observed unless there is a significant reason of health which would dispense a person from these laws.
LENTEN FASTING FOR ASH WEDNESDAY AND BEYOND
These laws are to be seriously observed unless there is a significant reason of health which would dispense a person from these laws.
The Queen of Angels Respect Life Committee invites you to keep up on current issues and activities, including a Father's Day Bake Sale benefitting their work, an update on the Jane's Egg Basket drive in April, and plans and prayers for religious freedom and conscience protections for employers and health care workers.
A LETTER FROM FRANCIS CARDINAL GEORGE
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:
I write to you concerning a most serious matter that negatively impacts the Church in the United States directly, and that strikes at the fundamental right to religious liberty for all citizens of any faith.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced on January 20 that almost all employers, including Catholic employers, will be forced to offer their employees health coverage that includes sterilization, abortion-inducing drugs, and contraception. Almost all health insurers will be forced to include those “services” in the health policies they write. And almost all individuals will be forced to buy that coverage as a part of their policies.
In so ruling, the Administration has seemingly ignored the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, denying to Catholics our Nation’s first and most fundamental freedom, that of religious liberty.
A “missal,” from the Latin word for “Mass,” is a book that contains the text (words) and rubrics (directions) for the celebration of the Sacred Liturgy. On Thanksgiving Weekend, the First Sunday of Advent, the Catholic Church in the United States will begin using the Revised Roman Missal with fresh texts for the Mass in English. This new translation has been many years in the making. It will more closely follow the words already in use for Mass in many different parts of the world, bringing us closer in union with the worldwide Church.
At Queen of Angels, there will be lots of help as we make this transition together. Please click the "Understanding the Revised Mass Texts" image in the sidebar or see the items below for some thoughts on the Mass and particular changes, a series which will appear each week in “The Guide” and here on our website.
October is designated as Respect Life Month by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. Respect Life Month recognizes life in all its glory and in all its forms, providing opportunities to embrace the whole cycle of life with which humanity has been blessed, from conception to natural death. We invite you to pray with our Respect Life Committee at Friday Holy Hours and a 40 Days for Life prayer vigil in honor of this most precious gift.
|CONCERT AT QUEEN OF ANGELS
Pianist Tom Stevens and George Flynn will perform their original compositions in the church at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, September 20. They will be assisted by violist Doyle Armbrust and mezzo soprano Joanna Wernette. Stevens is a well-known Chicago area composer and musician. Flynn chaired the musicianship and composition department at De Paul University and continues to be involved with the DePaul professional contemporary music performance series. The concert is free. A reception will follow.
LET’S HEAR IT FOR THE BOYS! Let’s do a great big shout out to the Queen of Angels Men’s Club for their ongoing support of the parish and school needs. These guys know how to have a good time and in doing so, live the Gospel tenet of helping whenever and wherever needed. Most recently, the Men’s Club gave $3,500 to the parish to be applied towards the new parking lot. Thank you, gentlemen and now... let’s hear it for the boys!
|IT’S NOT TOO LATE TO REGISTER FOR CHILDREN’S RELIGIOUS ED CLASSES
Children not attending a Catholic school may be registered for Sunday Morning Religious Education Classes (Kindergarten through Level 7) and Confirmation Preparation (eighth grade through high school). These classes have already begun for the 2011-2012 school year. Classes are structured to help children learn and grow in their faith during each successive year. Preparation is included for the sacraments of First Reconciliation, First Communion and Confirmation, but a well-rounded religious education includes much more. Help your children develop the gifts of faith that you and their godparents gave them at Baptism.
Children are invited to begin Religious Education when they are entering kindergarten or first grade. For students new to the program or transferring from another church or school, we will work with each family to place them in the appropriate program and class. Register at the parish office or by calling the Religious Education office at 773-769-4211.
TODAVÍA NO ES MUY TARDE PARA REGISTRARSE PARA LAS CLASES DE EDUCATIÓN RELIGIOSA
Las clases religiosas del año 2011-2012 ya comenzaron. Los niños que no asisten a escuelas católicas todavía pueden ser registrados para las clases de catecismo y confirmación que toman lugar los domingos por las mañanas. Las clases de catecismo son solamente para los niños que asisten a kindergarten hasta el séptimo año de primaria. Las de confirmación son solamente para estudiantes de octavo año de primaria y de secundaria.
Las clases de religión “riegan el fruto de Dios”. Las clases son estructuradas para que cada niño aprenda y crezca dentro de su fe. Estas clases incluyen la preparación para los sacramentos de Primera Reconciliación, Primera Comunión y Confirmación pero una educación religiosa bien fundada constituye de mucho más que esto. Ayude sus hijos a desarrollar los regalos de la fe que le fueron dados junto con sus padrinos el día de su Bautismo.
A diferencia de los que niños que asisten a escuelas no católicas, los niños son estimulados a comenzar su educación religiosa cuando están cursando kindergarten o el primer grado. Se les dará asistencia a aquellas familias que vienen de otra parroquia o escuela al igual que a los que son nuevos al programa para asegurarnos que sus hijos sean puestos en el programa y la clase adecuada. Usted puede registrarse en la oficina parroquial durante el horario habitual o llamando a la Oficina de Educación Religiosa al 773-769-4986 ext. 23.
A REFLECTION FROM SSVD In today’s Gospel Jesus tells us a parable to teach us how great God is and how generous, and then he calls us to this same greatness and generosity. As you put your gift in the Society of St. Vincent DePaul’s poor box, know that you are showing the generosity of God to those who are suffering and poor.
PRAY THE ROSARY ON SATURDAY Looking to take some time for prayer in your Saturdays? Join us to pray the Rosary after each 9 a.m. Saturday Mass. To volunteer to lead prayers, please call Joann at 773-583-1371.
REMEMBER A LOVED ONE Mass intentions may be offered in the name of friends or relatives, living or deceased, for those in need of extra prayers or in honor of a beloved saint. Suggested donation is $10 per Mass. Call 773-539-7510.
INTENCIONES DE MISAS Para pedir una intención especial para una misa en inglés o español, por favor visite el Centro Parroquial o llame al 773-539-3176. La donación sugerida es de $10 por misa.
EXPOSICIÓN DEL SANTÍSIMO Haga los viernes un buen día para orar y estar con el Señor. La iglesia estará abierta los viernes desde las 9 a.m. hasta las 5 p.m. Entre por la puerta que se encuentra sobre la Claremont, suba las escaleras y vire hacia la izquierda. Suba cinco escalones más y pase por la sacristía y detrás del altar. Allí entrará a la capilla de Veneración. El Santísimo estará expuesto en la capilla. Traiga su Biblia, rosario, libros y sus pensamientos. Pase algún tiempo con el Santísimo. Si usted lo desea, inscríbase para una hora de oración cada viernes. Favor de llamar al 773-539-3176.
THIRD ANNUAL PRO-LIFE WALK The Women’s Center “North versus South” 5K Walk for Life will be Sunday, September 25 to raise money to help save babies from abortion. Participants who raise $35 or more will receive a T-shirt, pro-life balloon, lunch, ice cream and more. Join the walk at Our Lady of Victory, 5212 W. Agatite. Registration opens at 6:30 a.m., with optional Mass at 9:30 a.m. and kick-off at approximately 10:50 a.m. For information and registration forms, visit the website at www.womens-center.org or phone 773-794-1313.
|CONSCIENCE RIGHTS VIOLATE SWEEPING HHS MANDATE
In implementing the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (the new health care reform law), the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently issued a rule requiring almost all private health plans to cover contraception and sterilization as “preventive services” for women. The mandate even forces individuals and groups with religious or moral objections to purchase and provide such coverage if they are to receive or provide health coverage at all. This poses an unprecedented threat to individual and institutional religious freedom.
The rule includes a religious exemption so extremely narrow that it protects almost no one. It covers only a “religious employer” that has the “inculcation of religious values” as its purpose, primarily employs and serves persons who share its religious tenets, and is a church organization under two narrow provisions of the tax code. A great many religious organizations—including Catholic colleges and universities, as well as hospitals and charitable institutions that serve the public—will be ineligible. Individuals and religiously affiliated health insurers will not qualify for the exemption.
The new rule would force insurance plans to cover “all Food and Drug Administration approved contraceptive methods, sterilization procedures, and patient education and counseling for all women with reproductive capacity.” Never before has the federal government required private health plans to include such coverage. The FDA-approved “emergency contraception” (EC) drugs that are covered by this mandate can work by interfering with implantation of a newly conceived human being. Also, the drug the FDA most recently approved for EC, "Ella,” a close analogue to the abortion drug RU-486, has been shown in animal tests to cause abortion. Thus, the mandate includes drugs that may cause an abortion both before and after implantation.
-- ACTION: Please send an e-mail message to HHS by visiting www.usccb.org/conscience. Once you send your comments to HHS, you will be automatically invited to send a message to your elected representatives in Congress, urging them to support the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act (H.R. 1179/S. 1467) to ensure that such federal mandates do not violate Americans’ moral and religious convictions.
-- MESSAGE TO HHS: “Pregnancy is not a disease, and drugs and surgeries to prevent it are not basic health care that the government should require all Americans to purchase. Please remove sterilization and prescription contraceptives from the list of ‘preventive services’ the federal government is mandating any drug that may cause an early abortion, and to fully respect religious freedom as other federal laws do. The narrow religious exemption in HHS’s new rule protects almost no one. I urge you to allow all organizations and individuals to offer, sponsor and obtain health coverage that does not violate their moral and religious convictions.”
-- WHEN: Send your comments to HHS by the end of the public comment period, September 30.
The U.S. Bishops have designated October as Respect Life Month, which recognizes the glory of life in all its forms; it’s a chance to embrace the whole cycle of life with which humanity has been blessed, from conception to natural death. Our Respect Life Committee will sponsor a candle burning in the church sanctuary and several events to mark Respect Life Month, including weekly bilingual Holy Hours and a "40 Days for Life" prayer vigil.
CATHOLICS COME HOME If you’ve been away from the Church, we welcome you and invite you to take a look at all our parish has to offer. Stop by the Welcome Table in church or call 773-539-7510. Welcome home!
THANK YOU Thank you to Marco Antonio Ambrocio and other members of the Guatemalan community who organized the festival of El Señor de Esquipulas. The event raised $351 for the parish community. Thank you!
¡GRACIAS! ¡Gracias a Marco Antonio y a los otros miembros de la comunidad Guatemalteca que organizaron el festival del Señor de Esquipulas. El evento recaudó $351 para la comunidad parroquial. Muchas gracias por sus esfuerzos!
SCIENTIFIC MINDS AT WORK Students of Queen of Angels School proudly presented their projects to judges, parents and friends at the Science Fair on January 12. Great job, everyone!
PRAY AS A “WOMAN IN THE WORLD” The Institute of Pastoral Leadership will sponsor a bilingual workshop from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, February 6 at Our Lady of Mercy Parish, 4432 N. Troy. “Woman in the World, the World of a Woman” is for women of every age, single or married, happy or not — women in search of God. Based on biblical stories and sources, this workshop offers an opportunity to reflect on the phenomenal and painful stories of women in ancient times and in the contemporary world. Please bring your bible. Deadline to register is February 2. For more information or to register, contact Sr. Margarita Bukowska at 847-837-4560 or email@example.com.
ORE COMO UNA “MUJER EN EL MUNDO” El Instituto de Liderazgo Pastoral patrocinará un taller bilingüe de 8:30 a.m.. hasta 3:30 p.m. el sábado, 6 de febrero en la Parroquia Nuestra Señora de Merced, 4432 N. Troy. “Mujer en el Mundo, el Mundo de una Mujer” esta designado para ti — mujer de cada edad, soltera o casada, feliz o desesperada — mujer en búsqueda de Dios. Con la base bíblica, este taller te ofrecerá una oportunidad de reflexionar sobre las dolorosas de mujeres en el mundo antiguo tan bien como el contemporáneo. Por favor traiga su Biblia. La fecha limitada de inscripción es el 2 de febrero. Para más información o para registrarse, contacte a Hermana Margarita Bukowska al 847-837-4560 o al firstname.lastname@example.org.
MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN SPRED Are you willing to set aside time for a worthwhile evening? In SPRED, adult friends with developmental disabilities are partnered with a volunteer catechist. When we meet with our friends we provide a place of peace to help them discover a sense of personal dignity and develop a spirit of prayer. We spend some time working on activities which settle us and help us to focus on the present. We then retire to the Holy Room, our mini chapel, where we share life stories; listen to the Word of Our Lord; sing and enjoy calming music; and share joyfully in the restful silence. We close our session with a simple sharing of food and fellowship – called Agape. We talk and enjoy the companionship of each other. Sessions have a calming and renewing influence on us as they deepen our awareness of God’s presence and love in our lives. This opportunity is offered only 24 evenings a year. You will be delighted with what we have to offer for you as you give yourself to one of our very special friends. Call Joann Salas at 773-583-1371 or Julia Hess in the SPRED office at 773-539-3634.
REGISTRACIÓN COMO MIEMBROS ¿Es tu primera vez en nuestra parroquia? ¡Bienvenidos! ¿Se ha mudado recientemente? ¡Que Dios bendiga su nuevo hogar! Por favor visite o contacte la oficina parroquial al 773-539-3176 para registrarse o arreglar su registración actual. ¡Gracias!
NEW TO THE PARISH COMMUNITY? Welcome! Please visit the Parish Center or call 773-539-7510 to register in the parish. You are always welcome at Queen of Angels.
HIGH ACHIEVERS The following parishioners achieved Honor Roll status at St. Benedict High School: Ashley Krysztopik,’13, first honors; Amanda Nota, ‘11, second honors; and Dustin Gerhart, ‘11, second honors. Congratulations and keep up the good work!
CHOIR CD AVAILABLE It’s not too late to get a copy of the new CD, O Magnum Mysterium, featuring the Queen of Angels choirs. The CD features favorite carols and choir anthems of the Christmas Season. The cost is $20. Proceeds support the Music Ministry at Queen of Angels. The CD can be purchased through the Parish Center. Call 773-539-7510.
MEN’S CLUB HOOPS CONTINUES THURSDAYS Men of the parish are invited to the weekly session of Men’s Club Hoops at 9 p.m. Thursdays in the Guild Hall Gym. Donation is $10 weekly plus an annual Men’s Club membership of $15. Join a bunch of 30-, 40-, 50- and 60-year olds trying to make it up and down the court for a couple hours each week. A liability waiver must be signed prior to lacing up the sneakers. Concessions are served immediately after the grueling play, along with lively discussions around our 62” HDTV!
Men’s Club also meets on the second Thursday of each month at 8 p.m. in the Voss Center. Join us for pizza and beer. There is a $5 donation per meeting. Men’s Club Hoops follows each meeting. Men’s Club events include the Fall Golf Outing, Family Gym Nights, high school scholarship funding, gym improvements, Membership Dinner and St. Paddy’s Day Party. Call Pat McQuillan at 773-575-4483.
ANKLEBITERS IS BACK IN SESSION! Are you a parent of a small child? Are you looking for an activity to break up your child’s week? Then join us every Monday beginning at 10 a.m. in the school basement. Enter using the north play lot entrance and arrive no later than 10:30 a.m. to sign in. This group is for parents, caregivers and their children aged 3 and under. Please contact Susie San Roman at 773-719-8111 or email@example.com.
USCCB POSTCARD CAMPAIGN The Office of Immigrant Affairs and Immigration Education is sponsoring a USCCB Postcard Campaign for Legislative Change. During January, February and March, the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops (USCCB) is stepping up efforts to push for legislative change by beginning a 1.5 million signature postcard campaign in dioceses across the country.
The campaign is designed to show Senators and Representatives that Catholics and other supporters of immigrants want legislation that keeps families together, adopts humane enforcement policies and ensures that immigrants without legal status are registered. Call 312-534-8105. Or visit the websites www.justiceforimmigrants.org or www.archchicago.org/immigration.
BEAT 1911 SET TO MEET All citizens residing between Lawrence and Montrose and Damen and the Chicago River are invited to attend the next Beat 1911 Meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday, January 26 on the sixth floor at Kindred Hospital, 2544 W. Montrose Ave. Beat Meetings give the opportunity to express neighborhood safety concerns. Contact the 19th District Community Policing Office at 312-744-5574.
IT MAY CHANGE YOUR LIFE! We say the ”Our Father” and “forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.” Are you ready to truly make that prayer yours? Come to Mayslake Ministries from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, February 13 and 20 at 450 E. 22nd St., Suite 170, Lombard. Learn how to let those past hurts and resentments finally go, even though they are legitimate wounds. The workshop is presented by author Judy Logue whose book, Forgiving Those You Love to Hate, will be available at both sessions. Cost is $15 per session or $25 for both. Call 630-268-9000.
DEACONS IN THE CATHOLIC CHURCH Let youth be served! A deacon is a man who is called by God to a ministry of service. With bishops and priests, the deacon receives the Sacrament of Holy Orders. He is an ordained minister who may be married and have children, living in the lifestyle of the laity. Permanent deacons come in all shapes, in all sizes and of all ages. The minimum age for application is 31 (the maximum is 62). So don’t wait for retirement to open your ears for the voice of the Holy Spirit.
Do you believe Jesus may be inviting you to inquire about this ordained ministry? Come to “Exploring the Permanent Diaconate,” a Sunday Mass and discussion on the path toward an ordained lifestyle as a permanent deacon at the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary in Mundelein, Illinois, in the Conference Center Chapel on the south side of the campus on Sunday, February 21, 2010 at 2 p.m. Contact Deacon Jim Cozzo, Jr. at 847-837-4563 or at firstname.lastname@example.org and request a pre-application form. Also, RSVP for the February 21, 2010 session. The Deacon Formation Program is sponsored by the Archdiocese of Chicago.
MASS INTENTIONS Intentions may be placed for Sunday, weekday, holy day or holiday Masses in 2010. They may be offered in the name of friends or relatives, living or deceased, for those in need of extra prayers or in honor of a beloved saint. Dates special to your loved ones are great times to remember them in the prayers of the Mass. Suggested donation is $10. Please call the office at 773-539-7510.
SHOP WITH THE ANGELS Stop by the Parish Center during the week or visit one of the Shop with the Angels representatives in the Gathering Space after the 8 and 9:30 a.m. Masses each Sunday. Queen of Angels can simplify your shopping with Shop with the Angels. Jewel, Dominick’s, Starbucks, Panera, Mobil, BP and Shell gift cards will be in stock. Order forms are available for other purchases. You determine where your profits go: to the parish, Lyman Fund or a school tuition account. Thanks for your support of this winning fundraiser.
FRIDAY EUCHARISTIC ADORATION Every Friday, the Blessed Sacrament is placed out for veneration and prayer from 9:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. To reach the Adoration Chapel, enter the church through the Claremont door, walk up the stairs, turn to the left and then to the left again. Walk down the passage behind the altar and enter the former baptistery where the Eucharist is exposed for veneration.
At some time during the day, stop by the chapel for some quiet time with Jesus. Help us keep vigil with the Lord by making time on Fridays for these beautiful moments of prayer.
Bring your thoughts and your bible, rosary, and books, or use the prayer resources in the adoration chapel. Spend some time with Jesus in the form of the Blessed Sacrament. Visitors are asked to register attendance in the sign-in book in the chapel when attending Adoration. You may sign up for a particular hour of prayer every week. Call Christine Murphy at 773-561-9072.
THERE'S STILL TIME Looking for convenience and high quality in food choices for your family? Market Day fits the bill and helps Queen of Angels School, too! Pick up a Market Day order form in church or school or check out the Market Day website at www.marketday.com to see more than 200 restaurant quality food items. Order deadline is noon, Wednesday, January 27 on the internet. Pick-up is 9:15 a.m. Saturday, January 30 at the Guild Hall Gym. Want to help? Call Nancy at 773-539-7510.
GET YOUR HEART READY FOR LENT Charis Young Adult Ministries will present “Forgive, Be Forgiven and Move On in Love” at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, February 11 at St. Michael, 1633 N. Cleveland Ave. What’s on your mind and heart? Lent is a time to reflect on our lives and relationships in the context of God’s loving mercy. Fr. Jim Hurlbert of St. Alphonsus Parish will lead this evening of discussion and Reconciliation. Visit www.charisministries.org for complete details.
ECUMENICAL SERVICE The 10th Annual Week of Prayer for Christian Unity Chicago Ecumenical Prayer Service will be this afternoon at 4 p.m. at Community Church of Wilmette, 1020 Forest Ave. The service will be followed by a reception. Leaders of nearly 20 Christian churches will participate in the service, which is open to all. The Week of Prayer for Christian Unityis a collaborative effort between the Catholic Church and the World Council of Churches. Each year churches in a different part of the world prepare the theme and texts for the Week of Prayer. This year’s theme is “You Are Witnesses of These Things” (Luke 24:28).
37TH ANNIVERSARY OF ROE V. WADE Candlelight Rosary and Benediction will be offered at 3 p.m. today at St. Paul of the Cross, 320 W. Washington, Park Ridge to mark the anniversary of the Roe versus Wade decision. This is part of the Archdiocesan Respect
Life effort. Call 847-696-9218.
PUTTIN’ ON THE RITZ St. Ignatius College Prep will host “Puttin’ on the Ritz: Midnight in the Garden of Athena” on March 20. This is the only fundraiser of the school year. Admission is $60. For more information, contact the auction help desk at 312-432-8406.
SHHHHH! All electronic devices, such as cell phones and pagers, should be turned off before entering the church. Please be considerate of others. Thanks!
GORDON TECH MONDAY BINGO Play Monday Night Bingo at Gordon Tech College Prep High School, 3633 N. California. Enter through the gym. Doors open at 5 p.m., play begins at 7 p.m. and ends by 9:20 p.m. Raffle, pull tabs, food and parking available.
SE NECESITAN VOLUNTARIOS PARA EL MINISTERIO NICODEMO Cuando un miembro de la parroquia fallece, el sacerdote guía el velorio o servicio de vigilia y celebra la misa de entierro cristiano. Sin embargo, las Oraciones de Elogio finales en el cementerio son guiadas por un laico. ¿Por qué? Los laicos son invitados a guiar a sus hermanos y hermanas en oración. Es un signo que cuando un miembro de la parroquia muere, otros miembros en la parroquia, y no solo el sacerdote, rezan. Para el Ministro Nicodemo, este es un ministerio de ternura a una familia en tristeza y también uno de satisfacción personal. ¿Puede usted hacer tiempo para este esfuerzo? Se necesitan voluntarios, especialmente aquellos disponibles para los funerales durante la semana. Este ministerio, que ha formado parte de Reina de los Ángeles por mucho tiempo, está comenzando en más parroquias a través de la arquidiócesis. Con sus compañeros de la parroquia, siga en los pasos de la amabilidad de Nicodemo quien, con José de Arimatea, enterró a Jesús. Formación, orientación y manual serán proveídos. Por favor llame al 773-539-3176.
FIRST LOOK FOR CHARITY The perfect combination: a great party for a good cause! Join Catholic Charities for an evening of live entertainment, fine food, fabulous cars and friends at the Exclusive Preview Night of the Chicago Auto Show from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. Thursday, February 11 at McCormick Place. There will be a pre-event reception at 5:30 p.m. Black tie required. Proceeds benefit the Neighbors in Need Fund and Maternity and Adoption Programs for Catholic Charities. For more information, call Jennifer Wolff at 312-948-6707 or email@example.com.
EXPOSICIÓN DEL SANTÍSIMO Haga los viernes un buen día para orar y estar con el Señor. La iglesia estará abierta los viernes desde las 9:30 a.m. hasta las 5 p.m. Entre por la puerta que se halla sobre la Claremont, suba las escaleras y vire hacia la izquierda. Suba cinco escalones más y pase por la sacristía y detrás del altar. Allí entrará a la capilla de Veneración. El Santísimo estará expuesto. Traiga su Biblia, rosario, libros y sus pensamientos. Pase algún tiempo con el Santísimo. Si usted lo desea, inscríbase para una hora de oración cada viernes. Deténgase en la capilla durante el día para pasar un rato con el Señor en oración. Favor de llamar al 773-539-3176.
February 7 — Lyman Scholarship Fund (with regular collection)
February 7 — Annual Catholic Appeal Commitment
This year is the 10th anniversary of a statement issued by the U.S. bishops titled Always our Children. It is a pastoral message addressed to parents, “trying to cope with the discovery of homosexuality in their adolescent or adult child.” The document not only gives advice to parents, but also clarifies some issues regarding homosexuality from a Catholic perspective.
The Church asks parents not to “break off contact; don’t reject your child. Your child may need you and the family now more than ever. He or she is still the same person. This child, who has always been God’s gift to you, may now be the cause of another gift: your family becoming more honest, respectful, and supportive.”
The Church acknowledges that “generally, homosexual orientation is experienced as a given, not as something freely chosen.” Because it is not a choice, “a homosexual orientation cannot be considered sinful” nor is “immoral in itself,” unlike homogenital acts. The Bishops teach that we must “concentrate on the person, not on the homosexual orientation itself.” We must love all, regardless of their sexual orientation. Just as “God does not love someone any less simply because he or she is homosexual,” neither should we.